What is the Seal of Biliteracy?
The Illinois State Seal of Biliteracy is an award bestowed by the Illinois State Board of Education and given by Elmhurst Community Unit School District 205 in recognition and celebration of students who have attained a high level of proficiency in two or more languages by high school graduation. The state of Illinois officially adopted the Seal of Biliteracy in 2013, and Elmhurst was among one of the first districts to offer it to students in 2014.  

Students who have earned the Illinois State Seal of Biliteracy or the Illinois State Commendation Toward Biliteracy will receive their award at the time of their graduation. Their achievement will be acknowledged on student transcripts and diplomas.

Rationale for the Illinois State Seal of Biliteracy

The Illinois State Board of Education and Elmhurst Community Unit School District 205 recognize the importance of language and how it helps prepare students for global citizenship. Not only is learning a language beneficial to students’ cognitive development, it also provides opportunities for them to participate effectively in global political, social, cultural and economic contexts. Further, the demand for employees to be fluent in more than one language is increasing rapidly in Illinois and throughout the world. The Seal of Biliteracy builds upon the rich linguistic and cultural assets of the district and community, providing students with the necessary skills to be successful in college, career, and life.


For more information about the Illinois State Seal of Biliteracy, please visit the district website or contact Ariana Leonard, District EL/Bilingual, World Languages and Federal Program Coordinator.